Terrified employees crowded onto the single exterior fire escape, which city officials had allowed Asch to erect instead of the required third staircase. It was a flimsy and poorly anchored iron structure which may have been broken before the fire. It soon twisted and collapsed from the heat and overload, spilling about 20 victims nearly 100 feet (30 m) to their deaths on the concrete. A large crowd of bystanders gathered on the street, witnessing 62 people jumping or falling to their deaths from the burning building. There are many damages that result from this accident because its deadliest industrial disaster that happened in 1911 .The fire caused the deaths of 146 garment workers (123 women and 23 men) who died from the fire, smoke inhalation, or falling or jumping to their deaths.
The firefighters sprayed the building as high as they could in hopes that the mist would cool the fire and start to put it out. The women soon realized that escape was hopeless. Knowing that they were going to burn to death, some turned to the window and jumped. None of the girls that jumped survived the fall. Within twenty minutes of the fire breaking out, there were bodies lying on the street and people surrounding the building.
The Triangle Waistshirt Factory fire was one of the worst fires after the turn of the 19th century. It took the lives of over one-hundred and forty people, most of which died indirectly from the fires and smoke. While the fire was caused by an accident, the true culprit was negligence and shoddy management. The factory was located in the ten story Asch building in downtown Manhattan and owned by Max Blanck and Isaac Harris. Both men were notorious for their use of insurance fraud to collect money by setting fire to their building to collect the insurance money, which was a common practice during the time.
The New york Times “Men and Girls die in the Waist Factory Fire; Trapped High Up in Washington Place Building; Street Strewn with Bodies; Piles of Dead Inside." describes the way this workers got killed: “Most of the victims were suffocated or burned to death within the building, but some who fought their way to the windows and leaped met death as surely, but perhaps more quickly, on the pavements below.” Unfortunately none of the employees who decided to jump to the floor survive. In conclusion, the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire was a tragedy that could have been avoided. It caused many innocent people to lose their lives. But, fortunately this caused the factory owners and the government to take more precautions with the factory.Because of this incident, the safety standards have changed significantly such as better firefighting equipment, and fire alarm.
The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire was the most devastating yet important event of the 20th century, due to the numerous deaths and impact on the improvement of working conditions, especially those concerning safety. On March 25, 1911, between 4:30 and 4:45 P.M., the Triangle factory began to go up in flames. Because of the fire, many lives were lost due to suffocation from the fire, or death by jumping as many people chose to jump rather than burn. Although the fire was under control by 5:15 P.M., out of the 500 people employed by the Triangle company 146 died and 71 were injured. The fire took place in the Asch Building, now known as the Brown Building, located at 23-29 Washington Place in Manhattan, New York.
The vision of girls jumping from the windows to escape being burned alive, broke down even the most seasoned Fire Chief sending him down to the street with quivering lips. In 1910, 13 weeks on strike most companies accepted the unions’ demands but Triangle Waist Company denied the union, giving higher wages and shorter hours. If Triangle Waist Company had accepted the union, would the 146 girls and boys lived? The fire was a terrible tragedy that will never be forgotten but it changed the Industrial life. Following the Fire there was industrial reform, passing of legislation, and it led to women’s suffrage.
Working conditions are extremely punitive and must be put to an end. American Labor Unions and labor laws have also drastically changed overtime. The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire in Manhattan, New York City on March 25, 1911 was one of the deadliest industrial disasters in the history of the city, and resulted in the fourth highest loss of life from an industrial accident in U.S. history. Triangle Waist Company was one of the largest blouse makers in New York City. They specialized in making shirtwaists, the very popular women's blouse that had a tight waist and puffy sleeves.
According to the Charles Willis Thompson of the New York Times, “This is the worst I ever saw,” the cop said” (Drehle, 2003, p.178). This secondary source Drehle mention is Leon Stein’s book, The Triangle Fire, this book demonstrates the interviews of the survivors of the fire. The book The Fires That Changed America: Second Edition by Patrick Griffith is contrasting to Drehle’s book, considering it talks about many fires, including the Triangle Waist Company fire showing the lives that have been lost and the story of their tragedies. The book Triangle Fire: A Brief History with Documents, 2nd edition by Jo Ann E. Argersinger is similar to Triangle: The Fire That Changed America, due to both books, speaking about political and economic events, the significance of the fire, and women workers, improvements in the factory. Drehle proves his argument by showing the impacts the fire did to America, such as how it resulted in the woman striking in the picket lines.
In an era of a rising unionization, The Triangle Fire, calligraphy written my Leon Stein, describes one of the worst industrial disasters in the nation’s history that ended up killing 146 of the 500 Triangle Shirtwaist Company employees, which happened to be female immigrant workers. These immigrants came to the United States with their families in search for a better life. Instead they found themselves working long hours only to receive low wages along with horrendous working circumstances with very little freedom. This thrilling event happened in New York on the late afternoon of March 25, 1911. The tendentious Max Blank and Isaac Harris owned the top three floors in the Triangle Shirtwaist Company in the Asch Building.
Most of the victims were burned alive or jumped to their death, because the factory did not have the proper safety equipment and the doors being locked within the building. This tragedy brought attention to the dangerous working conditions that the victims endured in the sweatshop factories. Which therefore led to new laws